14 February 2013

South Africa: Kwazulu-Natal Mec for Transport, Community Safety and Liaison Willies Mchunu Expresses Shock and Disgust At the Spate of Rapes in the Province

press release

KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) MEC for Transport, Community Safety and Liaison, Willies Mchunu has expressed his utter disgust and disbelief at the alarming rate of spate of the rape incidents in the province. Today Mchunu said such inhuman behaviour, where random incidents of rapes including that of elderly citizens is taking place in various parts of the province, was totally abhorrent, disgusting and should be condemned with the strongest possible terms.

Mchunu was commenting in the wake of more than five incidents of rape that have been reported in the province in the past five months, saying they were serious violation of human dignity and an act of worst criminality.

The cruelest one was the rape of two senior citizens in KwaSwayimane, outside Pietermaritzburg towards the end of 2012. Also, recently two women between the age of 24 and 25 we allegedly raped in Lindelani outside Durban and are reported to be suffering from serious trauma and depression.

In the most recent shocking incident, a 35-year old man was arrested from KwaMashu for allegedly raping a grade-one boy. Also, the 2011/12 crime statistics revealed that in KwaZulu-Natal 12 288 sexual crimes occurred. However this figure represents a 3.9 decrease of such cases in KwaZulu-Natal.

"The moral fibre in our society has seriously deteriorated. Incidents of rape are at an alarming stage. It is unacceptable that women and children are victimised in this manner. Such an abuse has a potential of leaving lasting mental disruptions and trauma in the lives of the victims," said Mchunu.

He commended the police for working tirelessly in apprehending suspects accused of rape in the province. However Mchunu is adamant that most crimes of this nature are committed by people who are close to families or relatives, therefore urged communities to be bold enough to report cases to the police irrespective of who is involved.

"We all need to come together as various government departments, community organisations, NGOs, Police, Community Policing Forums and individuals to voice our anger against the abuse of woman and children. We are calling for the formation of community structures especial the Voting District Safety Task team and we are encouraging victims to utilise war rooms.

"We have strengthened our Victim Empowerment unit in the Department of Community Safety and Liaison to ensure that those who are victimised do get assistance," said Mchunu.

Issued by: KwaZulu-Natal Community Safety and Liaison

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